WEATHER experts have confirmed Reading officially endured its wettest ever February this year - with flood ravaged families looking to a drier spring as they attempt to rebuild their lives.

Scientists at Reading University say 117.2mm of rain fell on the borough during the last month of winter - three times the amount normally recorded. It is only the fifth time since records began in 1908 that February rain levels have topped the 100mm mark.

Meteorologist Dr Roger Brugge said: “With 374.6 mm of rain falling this winter, it has been the wettest winter in the university’s rainfall record. Much of this winter rain fell in just 11 weeks, and the fall represents 59% of the annual average rainfall at the university.

“After a dry start to December, this winter’s rain has tended to fall frequently with moderately large daily totals, rather than being due to a few exceptionally wet days. The number of days when 5mm or more of rain fell totalled 28 this winter - more than in any other winter in the university’s record.”

But statistics from the university’s weather station also show February was the warmest in more than a decade, with temperatures never plunging below 1.3°C and averaging at 6.2°C.

Dr Brugge said: “Only one day with slight sleet was observed at the university this winter. In Reading it is not uncommon for winters to have just one or two days of snow - or indeed, to be free of any snowfall at all.”